Modern Theology: Karl Barth and Emil Brunner Essay

Modern Theology: Karl Barth and Emil Brunner Essay

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The doctrine of election has been one of the key subjects discussed by various influential theologians throughout the two thousand years. Many have attempted to understand and embrace the enigma of election presented in the bible. It is important to realize that there are many views pertaining to the doctrine of election ranging from prominent theologians such as Augustine and Pelagius, Calvin and Arminius, Barth and Brunner and various other theologians and their respective counterparts. Karl Barth and Emil Brunner are the giants on the subject of modern theology. Their theological insights are such that even now people are mesmerized by their incredible aptitude for theological understanding and presentation of that framework in a fluid and concise frame. Each of these two theologians presents a theology on the doctrine of election from a biblical perspective. The doctrine of election is one of the main points in the Bible because throughout it we are presented with passages proclaiming that God is sovereign in whatever or whomever He elects. God is the one who elects man and that He is for humanity. God reveals His love and grace through His divine freedom in love, grace and a special attention He provides for man. Karl Barth was criticised by Emil Brunner for Barth’s concept of Jesus Christ as the electing God and the elected man, from which arose the understanding of “universalism” and questionable faith of Barth according to Brunner.
Karl Barth’s theology is such that it revolves around the person of Jesus Christ who he presents is the everlasting event of the hypostatic union between God and mankind. Karl Barth refuted the historical understanding of predestination as the infinite, definite and beyond purist edict of God...

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...Scriptures. Brunner therefore accuses Barth of going beyond the premise of Bible which cannot be allowed as the evidences presented can be used any number of ways. The main criticism coming from Brunner towards Barth is that use only the Scripture for the evidences to support the hypothesis presented and not to go outside the parameters of Biblical evidences. Both Barth and Brunner devote to present and affirm the Bible as their foundation for the hypothesis. Barth and Brunner present a doctrine of election and both are very much alike except a few themes in each of these doctrines of election. Like Barth, Brunner presents election as God’s grace alone which is poured towards humanity. Brunner refuses the double predestination as being un-Biblical “…God has chosen one from eternity for eternal life and has denied the other from eternity to eternal damnation.”

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